Category Archives: Uncategorized

Possible relevance to libraries seeking to shift from conventional to New Librarianship approach? – it has certainly got me wondering.

Asked David Lankes what he thought of potential relevance & he has responded, This is brilliant and I agree right in track. Building knowledge and narratives in a community certainly seems like sense making.

So, perhaps has milieu links in application of personal pedagogy to librarianship????


Fab quotes

The Unquiet Librarian is moving on to a new blog & in her announcement post she said something really nice – sometimes we must be brave and courageous to venture into places we might not go in order to make those turns and moves that “will clear our vision” of what once was and to begin to be what can be.

The best leaders understand that it is not their job to know. Instead it is their job to create the systems that discover – William Barnett 8th July 2017 on RN’s Best Practice

Do we need a basic understanding of behaviourism & constructivism?

I think that we do. I think that understanding behaviourism & how we might be employing it in our practice will probably help us understand how to move to constructivist approaches if we’re not already trying to us them. And, for those of us who are using them (being aware of what we’re doing or doing it instinctually), we might be able to be more critically reflective.

I think that it’s  probably also important if our everyday leaders are behaviourist or administrative in their approaches to librarianship & libraries. Otherwise, we can get stuck in particular ways of being librarians because we are so busy & reflective time has to be deliberately carved out for the deeper thinking that influences the foundation from which we practice.

I think that, if we recognise the two, we can also see them playing out with our clients & this helps us understand them & work with them positively & productively.

I see a parallel with learning styles (& I use the term broadly). When we are learning, if we know how we learn & where our weaknesses are, it’s easier to make our learning more productive & enjoyable.

A librarian’s example might be in searcher type. When we are helping people learn to search, we help them see the kinds of things that they are doing which aren’t helping & the things that are really helpful – they become more aware. For example, we might explore searcher types (such as broad scanning, deep diving & fast surfing) & get students to think about which they are, what impact it is having on their searching & how they might capitalise on their strengths & work on the things that are holding them back.

More evaluating information to follow up


PLEs & virtual maker spaces & digital & info lit context

Have been reading & watching some great stuff that seem to work well to help me explore how I can seek to fit into/leverage digital learning space more. A little diagram to kick start my thinking:theories



Even in university libraries

I have often thought that the most personally meaningful reference-type interactions happen in public libraries. In uni libraries, we can have a big impact but they feel to be study-related/study-limited (or perhaps professionally influential). Not that this isn’t important, it definitely is. But, this morning I opened my email box to find that reference interactions can mean much more than that to the student. The student wrote, “I can’t thank you enough for your time, knowledge and kind words. I can truly say my time spent with you will always be one of those influential and valued moments that we have throughout our lives. The greatest thing I have learnt about life is when you least expect it and sometimes in the smallest ways comes a large blessing in so many ways”.  I could tell that this student was learning lots & thinking wonderfully during our discussion, but I never imagined that anything this significant was going on for her. This profession really can bring moments of joy sometimes 🙂

Librarians are at the intersection of so many things

I had a really interesting experience with a student client a couple of days ago. A wonderfully challenging & enjoyable interaction that really got me appreciating the intersections that influence so much of my working day, my professional ontology & my ever evolving professional epistemology (such as it is). I’m writing a post about because I don’t hear librarians talk about it but it seems really important to me, so I’d like to think about it a little.

The student is going into his fourth year of study & this involves undertaking a research project. The student is studying in a discipline which traditionally isn’t big on using scholarly literature as part of the learning journey. So, even exposure to some journal literature can be pretty mind blowing. The idea of being scholarly is completely new to these students (and the student with whom I was working).

I had expected the session to begin with a chat about the search strategies that he had planned & perhaps a bit of a chat about choice of database & GoogleScholar. A bit of a revision of work that he’d already done & helping him feel some confidence about how he was starting off this session. But, what actually happened was a wonderful conversation that revealed something of the complexity & excitement of his learning journey into the scholarly environment & the ways that librarianship lets me experience, understand & connect things. I hope that I can start to unpack it a little.

A discussion about his first strategy didn’t really end up being a discussion about the strategy & the initial results at all, though it could easily have been. The search results list actually became a launching pad to a discussion about being scholarly & how his understanding of scholarliness was evolving through his personal and business values – a willingness to sacrifice to some profit to produce the level of accuracy he considers that his clients deserve, accountability & transparency that he feels has gone by the way these days, a practice of prompting open & objective discussions with his clients, his responsibility to share his knowledge & experience with younger people in his field & to offer them support, the perfectionism that extends into his personal life & how his family responds, & his need to have a relationship with his supervisor that challenges him intellectually & demands that he aim high.

It was 2 1/2 hours of constructivism in action 🙂

Exploration of the research methodologies outlined in papers & his own research methodology came to life as he drew connections with his business operations & his obligations to produce accurate results. Determining how to discuss his methodology in his dissertation & in the conference paper that he is hoping to write with his supervisor gained meaning through their connections with the technical reports that he writes for his clients and how they need to be transparent so he can be accountable to them.

How that transparency in business creates an environment where he & his clients can have rigorous discussions about results that he reports and any assumptions that need to be made in his work or provisional elements that need to be flagged. And, how he came to relate this to research conversations based in objectivity & evidence rather than personal or business experience, perspectives, beliefs etc. And how that should be reflected in the literature that he uses to inform his research & how his information evaluation learning is letting him start to do that.

How the scholarly quest to ask the appropriate questions and identify the appropriate evidence drives the evolution of his search strategies, and how this has similarities with the way the different business environments influence the demands that his clients place on his work & the demands that he places on his work.

And, on this construction went 🙂

Because of the information literacy librarian’s place in the teaching & learning environments at a university & our engagement with such a variety of clients (all of the different world views to which we are exposed & have to work), I was able to take an active role in supporting his construction of the scholarly environment & his realisation that he is truly a scholar at heart.

I don’t think that everyone who works in teaching & learning environments gets this opportunity, simply because they don’t have to work with all the world views that we have to so we can be librarians.

And, it became even more interesting. The day after this conversation, he came to see me. There had been some technical problems overnight & he thought that his data had all been corrupted. He has lots of personal stuff on his plate as he is recovering from a life threatening illness. The data problem had led him to conclude that he needed to put aside his research project for the time being. But, then he re-read the notes from our chat &, that it was those notes that made him reconnect with his deep desire to enter the scholarly world, & that he wasn’t ready to put aside his research project. That, despite his illness, he needed to continue it for himself and the values of personal & business integrity that drive him to be the person that he his, the business man that he is & the student that he is.

Our profession lets us be part of journeys like that. It’s pretty amazing. And, to think that many people think that we’re spending our days checking out books. WOW!!!